Focus on the goals not the how
A big part of my job is building Financial Plans for clients. It surprises me how many people find it hard to think about their long-term future. Possibly because they’re busy but also they’ve probably not been asked this before!
It can be tricky to think of genuine motivational goals – for example ‘I want a level of financial independence by my mid 50s that means I can semi-retire’ – if you can’t work out how this could be achieved.
Logic says that if we can’t fathom how we could do something, the tendency is then not to commit to it. This thinking holds people back from fulfilling their goals. But this thinking is wrong.
The way to get over this hurdle is to completely ignore the HOW. Simply focus on what it is you want to achieve. By that I mean the things you want to do with your life, who you want to become, the levels of financial security you aspire to, places you want to visit and who you want by your side as you tick these goals off.
Build this list and keep revisiting it. My tip is: if you’re in a partnership, complete this list independently of each other. As it starts to take shape, write ‘N’ or ‘NN’ against each item. N are the goals you’re prepared to compromise. NN are NON-NEGOTIABLE.
Then over a glass of wine, share your list with your partner. Together work on a combined list, refine it, be more specific about your goals and let it be a source of motivation and focus. Don’t allow any ‘we’ll never be able to do xyz’ thinking to creep in.
When armed with that Goals List, your Trusted Adviser will be able to look at your current and future financial resources and help you understand what it’ll take to achieve your NON-NEGOTIABLES.
This is proper goal planning – it’s motivating, meaningful and it’s about you making the most of the rest of your life!
Chartered Financial Planner
Managing Director & Founder